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SOHU.com Teams with Baidu to Provide the Fastest Chinese Search Engine Capabilities.

SOHU Incorporates Only Search Engine Developed Specifically to Resolve

China's Information Retrieval Challenges Creating a More Dynamic

Browser Focused Internet Experience

BEIJING, Sept. 19 /PRNewswire/ --

SOHU.com (Nasdaq: SOHU), one of China's most popular Internet portals, today announced a strategic partnership with Baidu, developer of the most powerful Chinese search engine technology, to provide the premier knowledge resource on the Internet in Mainland China. With the power of Baidu, SOHU.com is unlocking the vast Internet to provide immediate access to the richest, most relevant information across multiple dimensions, including news, sports, business, real estate, IT, education, career, fashion, entertainment, music and games. With the acquisition of ChinaRen.com earlier this month, SOHU.com is now the largest Internet portal in China with over 7.8 million active registered users and over 44 million page views daily.

"Baidu's search technology addresses many Chinese-specific search-related needs that have never been addressed before by any other company," said Robin Li, president of Baidu. "We are pleased to be working with such a prestigious organization as SOHU.com to provide new, industry-leading search engine features to better meet the needs of the constantly growing population of Chinese web users."

The online population in China jumped from 1.5 million to 8.9 million during 1999 alone, and at that rate of growth, China could have the world's largest Internet population in just five years. In fact, Goldman Sachs predicts Net usage in China will grow to 81 million by 2003. As China prepares to join the World Trade Organization, hundreds of thousands of state enterprises are going online, further fuelling the need for fast, efficient web search results.

Baidu's search engine is over five times as powerful as any engine in use in China, yet it is designed specifically to meet the unique challenges of what will be one of the largest Internet communities in the world. SOHU.com will take advantage of Baidu's proprietary architecture to offer one of the fastest search services to web users in China with the most current information available. Frequent data refresh ensures that SOHU.com users will enjoy the most up-to-date Chinese web page indices in the world. With access to as many as 15 million web pages simultaneously, SOHU.com web browsers will also be able to enjoy the most relevant search function technology combined with the fastest response time in the country.

"SOHU.com has gained its popularity due to it being the only Internet portal that focuses on the specific needs in mainland China," said Xin Ye, Chief Technology Officer of SOHU.com. "As a result, we can integrate the right technology that is designed to meet the unique challenges here, and partnering with Baidu, the only search engine built for this purpose, further strengthens our leadership position as the number one brand in the country."

In addition to its branded information and entertainment channels, SOHU.com also offers the most comprehensive directory, email, message board, the first Java-based chat room, and virtual communities. SOHU.com's founder is Charles Zhang, who returned to China in 1995 after obtaining his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and has pioneered the Internet revolution in China. Charles Zhang initially acquired financial backing to establish his company from Professor Edward Roberts (MIT) and Nicholas Negroponte, co-founder of the MIT Media Lab and author of the international best seller "Being Digital." Currently, SOHU.com's investors include Intel, Dow Jones, IDG, Morningside, PCCW, Legend and Hikari.

About Baidu

Baidu is a leading Internet technology company in China, one of the world's fastest growing Internet markets. Baidu develops and markets scaleable web application software and services using a private label, "non-compete" business model. Baidu's flagship product, the Baidu Chinese search engine, is the fastest, largest, most relevant search engine with the freshest crawls in China. The Baidu powered search engine was rated number one in the August issue of PC Computing in China. Robin Li, Baidu's president and co-founder, pioneered the use of link analysis technology to do relevance ranking in 1996 and was subsequently awarded the U.S. patent on this technology. Baidu has offices in both Silicon Valley and Beijing, China. For more information, please visit www.baidu.com .

About SOHU.com

SOHU.com is one of mainland China's most recognized and established Internet brands and indispensable to the daily life of millions of Chinese who use the portal for their e-mail, home page, chat, messaging, news, search, browsing and shopping. Apart from continuous product and services development, SOHU.com also concentrates its efforts on making the Internet ubiquitously available, whether in the office, at home or on the road. Earlier this month the company agreed to acquire ChenRen.com, the most popular youth community web site in China. As of this release, page views per day for the combined company have reached 44 million and registered users total 7.8 million. SOHU.com, established by Dr. Charles Zhang, one of China's Internet pioneers, is in its fourth year of operation.

Safe Harbor Statement

Except for the historical information contained herein, the matters discussed in this news release are forward-looking statements involving risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in such forward-looking statements. Potential risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, SOHU.com historical and future losses, limited operating history, uncertain regulatory landscape in the People's Republic of China, fluctuations in quarterly operating results and the company's reliance on online advertising sales for substantially all of its revenues. Further information regarding these and other risks is included in SOHU.com's prospectus and in its other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 19, 2000
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